Four-time NTT IndyCar Series champion and Chip Ganassi Racing advisor, Dario Franchitti says that it is extremely beneficial for the team having four drivers who work so well together heading to the inaugural Big Machine Music City Grand Prix on the streets of Nashville next month.
Speaking to Paddock Eye on Tuesday, Franchitti said:
You’re absolutely right. Having four drivers really, really helps. Four that work together so well. That’s really a big bonus to gather information as quickly as possible in the limited practice you get.
I definitely feel good about that, working with the guys on that, whether it’s Alex in his first year, Marcus with a bit more experience, Scott who has been a long time, won everything, got so much experience in everything that he does in an INDYCAR, including how he runs practice sessions. Then you have Jimmie Johnson, his first year as an INDYCAR driver, but think of the experience he brings and how he deals with new circuits as well.
Yeah, there’s a lot of multi-car teams out there, so we have to figure out how to be better and faster than the others.
Dario Franchitti also spoke to us about he feels Jimmie Johnson’s first season in the NTT IndyCar Series is going saying:
He’s doing really well. He had a lot of spins, and that’s because of what was happening there. His bravery was going up during the tire run during the race, as the tire grip wear was going down, as they wore. Those two are the going in the opposite direction from each other.
That’s why these spins happen, he’s constantly pushing the limits, pushing himself. His ultimate lap time is right there. We’re getting up to speed a bit more, what happens when the tires go off, how to continue to drive quickly.
He’s not only learning, he’s trying to forget two decades of how to drive a stockcar. As I found out when I went to drive a stockcar, what works in INDYCAR doesn’t work in a stockcar and vice versa.
Yeah, he’s got a very difficult job, but he’s made massive progress. Yeah, I think he’s going to continue. Obviously he’s going to continue to get better, to start scoring more and more better results.
Every week. Every week. We actually haven’t spoken in about a week. He’s up in the mountains of Colorado. He’s getting away. Otherwise, honestly it’s every day.
We have Scott Pruett onboard as well. Scott is the voice of Jimmie, in the strategy. He’s working one-on-one. Every day, every couple of days. He wants knowledge, wants to learn all the time and push himself.
He’s a special individual. As a friend he’s a great guy. As a competitor he’s a special individual having in a race team.
Championship leader Alex Palou who drives the No.10 NTT DATA Honda spoke to Paddock Eye about how excited he is to be racing at Nashville saying:
Yeah, super excited. The event looks amazing. As I said, it looks like we’re going to have lots of activities not only for the drivers but for everybody. Yeah, I’m really looking forward to the race.
I think it’s good also that it’s a new track for me but it’s a new track for everybody. This year I’ve been going to the new tracks for me, but it was, like, known tracks for everybody. I was like, Oh, man, I need another session.
Here we’ll all be on even circumstances, and I think it’s going to be great.
About defending the championship, yeah, as I said, we try to maximize results. If we can have a shot to win, we’ll try and get some more wins. We need to win some more. I don’t think nobody won a championship only winning two races, so we need to win some more races and score some more podiums.
I’m looking forward to the races we have now. I think we have really good tracks with Nashville. I’m really looking forward to Laguna. I’ve been there on testing, but never race there. Long Beach, as well.
Yeah, I’m looking forward to the end of the season.